Sunday morning we actually headed to Lake Jackson for the Bay City Stake Conference. They hold two sessions in two different locations, one in Lake Jackson and one in Victoria. I really didn’t understand this until Sunday morning and because I would not be home until 6 p.m. I decided I needed to head back to our ward to be with the kids the rest of the day. Good call on my part because Aaron didn’t actually step through the door until after 7. I ended up speaking on ways to have a Christ centered home.
I began Monday by heading to League City for a companionship studying with two amazing sisters. They had study for a less active young man, an active family that they were having dinner with and a recent convert. We were able to plan lessons for each of them during our study together. We really focused on getting the young man to make the commitment to come to church on Sunday. They taught a lesson on the Ten Commandments specifically obeying our parents but also committing the kids to sharing what they learned with their friends and helping the recent convert feel confident in his ability to go on a mission. He wants to but doesn't think he knows enough. The sisters will do the restoration lesson where they will ask him questions about the points covered in the restoration pamphlet with him answering and testifying about each point. They will then explain that he just taught the lesson. They will also sing him “I'm a child of God while he writes down all the names of non members he knows on a piece a paper and then the sisters will kneel in prayer to decide of all the names who comes to mind that he with the missionaries could share the gospel with. The sisters should have a great day filled with testifying and sharing of experiences. I then ended back to Sugar Land to meet two other sisters for lunch. I had plenty of time to pick up Jessie from school. The homework and gathering the other kids begins.
Tuesday began zone conferences. The conferences are a great any to be with the missionaries and provide training that we feel will help them towards their purpose. We focused on the theme from the worldwide mission training, teach repentance and baptize converts. I was struggling on what I could share with the missionaries in my training section. After some prayers, studying and talking a with Aaron, we decided I could train on how they should plan to find in their nightly planning. Aaron will be focusing on teaching repentance, working with members and spiritual BOMs. The spiritual BOMs are fa one minute message about what you read in the Book of Mormon. You share why you love the BOM, what you read and learn, invite others to read and finish by promising them blessings for doing so. Very powerful and fun! Aaron had the zone leaders do a section of training specifically for needs they identified for their zone. This was their assignment from MLC. Very inspired on Aaron’s part.
First stop for our zone conference was Friendswood and League City zones. The conference was held at the Friendswood building because it is the most centrally located. This time we held the training in the gym verses the chapel. That way the missionaries are at tables to take notes. I think it helped them be better engaged. We still had some distractions because there was some remodeling going on with the building that we weren't aware of. The training was well received regardless, the missionaries were involved with the discussions and I felt they were inspired with many take aways. The Friendswood zone leaders trained on lesson planning and the League City zone leaders taught about following the spirit in their teaching. As we drove home I was prompted to change my training to be more inline with the teaching model….explain, demonstrate, explain, practice and evaluate. I will implement that in tomorrow’s conference.
I made arrangements for Jessie to go to Natalie’s house before and after school today since Bode had basketball practice before school and we had to leave so early. This was a wonderful blessing for me and I know it made Jessie’s day as well. She loves to play after school. 😊 Zac’s team had a game at Travis. They are the team that there was two of his teammates injured during the game last time because they were so aggressive. Well Travis was still very aggressive, still beat Clements but not but such a huge margin as last time but no injuries. Yeah! Zac was frustrated because he wasn’t playing up to his potential. After the 1st quarter (which we missed due to driving back from Friendswood) he was benched until almost the 4th quarter. He knew it was because his of turnovers. The whole team had a lot of turnovers….Travis really knows how to force turnovers. His experience with the team is a good growth experience. He is learning not only basketball skills but life skills. Grateful. ☺
Richmond and Houston South zones met in the Eldridge building which is where the mission office is located on Wednesday. I was again late for zone conference because I had been helping Allie with a paper that we couldn’t get the formatting to change to what it needed to be. When I went to see what I could do once last time. I finally figured out how to change it without starting over. As silly as it seems it was a tender mercy that I was able to come up with a solution to her problem. Stressful, yes but grateful I was able to be her mom when she needed me. ☺ The messages were well received today. Utilizing the teaching model made a huge difference in my training. So much better than the day before. Although during the demonstration I asked for a volunteer to help me. I assumed a sister would for nightly planning but no Elder Mota did. 😜 It was great but there was quite a bit of laughter when I suggested we go on neighborhood walks with the young moms and tots group. Another amazing zone conference where we were spiritually fed. Each one brings different insights because the spirit teaches each missionary individually. Love it!!
Jessie’s friend Avery invited her to play after school which of course made her dad! That gave me time to run to Walmart to grab some much needed groceries. I then headed to Bode's basketball game. He really has stepped up his defense game still working on his offensive game. During the game Bode was going up for a rebound along with a kid from the other team but both of them lost their footing falling to the court. In doing so the other kid landed on Bode’s leg rolling over the top of his ankle. Bode didn't play the last three minutes or so of the game as he had ice on his ankle to prevent swelling. It looks like his ankle is fine. Just stretch the tendons pretty good. His team ended up losing by a basket. :(
Our zone conference took us to Houston and Houston Central zones at the Bearing building which is 25-30 minutes away the due to two traffic accidents it took me almost an hour to get there. Unfortunately I had planned to take the kids to school today but with traffic I was late to the meeting. I would have been later but Aaron gave me a heads up and I was able to reroute. It had taken Aaron an 1 1/2 to get to the building. Conference was in full swing when I got there. Aaron does such a great job training. I hope to one day train with such ease and confidence. The Houston Central zone leaders trained on easing the concerns of the investigators and the Houston leaders train on lesson planning. The trainings were well done. I am so impressed with our missionary leadership. They are truly His hands in the work.
I met Jessie after school today so we could go to the book fair. It was fun looking through all the books they had available. I am surprised at how large the book fair is at her school. It was a scholastic book fair but was at least double the amount of books. Jessie got another Owl Dairy book, another one that I can’t remember but she just had to have it because the author of the book was coming to their school to speak and then an American Girl book she was really excited about. Jessie and I also put her valentines together for her class today. We had paper airplanes for the boys and origami fortune tellers for the girls and also gave each of her class mates a pencil. She also made valentines for some of her friends in Utah. She has been lucky that they have stayed connected with her with notes and cards. She loves getting mail from them.
Friday we wrapped up our zone conferences in Bay City Zone. It was a very early start for me so I could ensure I got my exercise in for the day. We had to be out the door and on the road by 7:30. That meant Bode and Jessie had to leave at the same time to walk to school. All of the kids had a half day as well. Jessie had her Valentines party at school. She wanted to wear something to be in the spirit of Valentines. She had already worn her cute pink sweater that had a silver heart on it earlier in the week so we had to be creative. Her “Allie inspiration” came through she looked very hip with a subtle twist of Valentines. She was happy with the results. I wish I would have taken a picture but I only thought of it now. The conference was great. The twist today is I kept jumping the gun with insights but Aaron was complementary saying I created nice transitions into the next subject. ;) The zone leaders here focused on practicing bold commitments and the importance of follow up. They did a really good job.
I was able to make it back to the second half of Zac’s basketball game. The game was a pretty tight game going back and forth. In the last minute and a half it looked like Kempner was going to take the win from Clements. Patty one of the point guards went up for a 3 to tie the game when he got fouled. He made the first free throw missed the second and made the final one. So down one with other team with the ball. Clements was able to force a turnover and #42 on our team made a jump shot from the left post for the win with Only 4 seconds left. Great game for the Zac’s team. J
Allie competes in her final cheer competition in California today. Their performance was solid. They hit all their stunts and killed it on their dance portion. I have been so impressed by her dedication and growth this year in cheer. It has been challenging year but the team really came together in January. They worked hard and focused on what they could accomplish together. That perseverance paid off into a successful season. I am so grateful for everyone that has supported her in cheer and her senior year. It was so important to me that she was surrounded and felt the love of the family. So thank you everyone. Zac had basketball practice again from 11 to 1. It really eats into our Saturday's but this is the last one for the season. Aaron took Bode and Jessie to the Glazery to make a creature, an elephant and Aaron even did an airplane. Jessie loves going there to paint ceramics. The three of them also went to see Kung Fu Panda 3 while Zac hung out with Claire and Lainey. Fun day for all of us!